Book Review: Garden Made

Are you a crafty gardener? If so, Stephanie Rose”s book, Garden Made: A Year of Seasonal Projects to Beautify Your Garden and Your Life (Roost Books, 2015), is a fun handbook to keep close by. Rose has collected 40 fairly easy to do projects to enhance your containers, your garden and your home.

9781611801743Rose began gardening after an illness that kept her bed-ridden for a year. In her introduction, she explains that she came to gardening as a way to break up the monotony of her days. But, as many before her have discovered, the garden can be a healing place. “I take pleasure in fresh air, dirty fingernails, striking plants and delicious food while I work out the creaks from my bones and the frustrations from my mind,” she says. “It’s not that gardening is a cure-all, but a few hours spent with my troubles on the back burner and some muck on my bots can make a huge difference in the day.”

Projects are divided by season, ranging from making seed paper in spring to creating terrarium ornaments for the holidays. Each project includes a list of required materials and thorough instructions. Photographs of each step of the process for each project make it easy to follow along. For holiday projects, for instance, Rose suggests a simple hanging basket filled with greenery, colorful berries and a glass hurricane candle holder with a candle. Another options she recommends is a simple garland of cedar boughs wired together and embellished with pine cones.

One of my favorite projects is a rustic garden sign, which is made to look weathered by applying layers of paint and roughing it up. These would be a cheerful addition to the vegetable garden or any other casual space.

This is the kind of book that’s enjoyable to page through during the winter months, then put to use with seasonal garden projects. Retail price is $24.99 in the United States, $32.49 in Canada.